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Rajnath Singh hints at reducing security forces in north-east

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Guwahati: Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday expressed concern over the large-scale deployment of security forces in the northeast and asked the chief ministers to conduct a “reality audit” for deployment in their states.

Rajnath Singh, who reached Assam on Friday evening, chaired a meeting of the chief ministers of the northeastern states on security and development on Saturday.

The home minister assured deployment of central forces when actually needed, saying reduction in deployment in the region without compromising on security was needed to encourage outsiders to think positively about the northeast.

“There has been significant improvement in the security scenario in the entire northeast in the past few years. The overall insurgency level is at an all-time low,” he said.

Stating that Mizoram, Tripura, a large part of Assam and Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh were “almost free of insurgency”, he said there was a strong desire for peace in Nagaland and Manipur too.

Rajnath Singh said that at present, the deployment of forces was even more than when insurgency was at its peak.

“We must plan to reduce the security deployment so as to make the environment easy to encourage positive thinking among outsiders about the region. I would like to urge all the chief ministers to have a realistic audit of deployment of the Central Armed Police Forces,” he said.

While there was curfew in Manipur, author Binalakshmi Nepram tweeted pictures of agitation between security forces and protestors.

Rajnath Singh expressed concern over the recent activities along the India-Myanmar border, saying there were reports of insurgents, weapons and drugs crossing the international border.

“I have constituted a committee headed by Joint Intelligence Committee chairman R.N. Ravi to review how to effectively manage the India-Myanmar border. The committee has reviewed the matter and is expected to submit its report soon,” he said.

The home minister said there was a need to tighten vigil along the Bangladesh border too.

Rajnath Singh also took up the issue of people living near the international border.

“We should not ignore the people on the border. There are some 240 villages along the India-Mynamar border and over two lakh people within 10 km of the India-Myanmar border. This large population is without any worthwhile security cover and they are at the mercy of insurgents. A similar situation prevails along the India-Bhutan border,” he said, appealing to the chief ministers to pay attention to this crucial area.

“You may consider opening and strengthening of police stations in the border areas,” he said.

Rajnath Singh also appealed to the chief ministers to provide land for border fencing.

On the issue of withdrawal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) from the region, the home minister said it would be withdrawn wherever the situation improves.

(IANS)

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A New Cyber Security Strategy is Released by U.S.

The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has released a new cyber security strategy, citing evolving threats from cyberspace that the country is facing.

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Laptop being handled by a person.
representational image. Pixabay

The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has released a new cyber security strategy, citing evolving threats from cyberspace that the country is facing.

DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen told Congress in a hearing on Tuesday that “the strategy was built on the concepts of mitigating systemic risk and strengthening collective defence, both (of which) will inform our approach to defending US networks and supporting governments as well as the private sector in increasing the security of critical infrastructure”, Xinhua news agency reported.

Due to its nature, the chip is physically unclonable and can, thus, render the device invulnerable to hijacking, counterfeiting or replication by cyber-criminals
Representational image. Pixabay

The 35-page paper listed the strategy’s five pillars, focusing on identifying risks, reducing vulnerability, reducing threats, mitigating consequence and enabling cyber security outcomes.

The document painted an evolving landscape in the realm of cyberspace, saying that developing technology and growing threats from nation-states and terrorists to penetrate US infrastructure called for a new approach to the country’s defence in cyber security.

Also Read: Parental Control Apps May Not Help in Shielding Teenagers From Cyber Threats

According to statistics, the number of cyber incidents on federal systems reported to DHS increased more than 10-fold between 2006 and 2015.

After a 2017 directive from US President Trump, the Pentagon on May 4 elevated the US Cyber Command to the status of a unified combatant command. (IANS)